Top 7: Jump Scenes

Big spoilers and extreme graphic content.

1. [Rec] – The Attic
2. The Thing – Petri Dish
3. Alien – Dallas’s Death
4. The Descent – Night Vision
5. Poltergeist – The Clown
6. Jurassic Park – The Raptor
7. Signs – Birthday Party
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1. [Rec] – The Attic

This scene could easily fit on all four horror lists, but thanks to the sudden appearance of… whatever the hell that is… it tops my list of greatest jump scenes.

2. The Thing – Petri Dish

The ultimate fake out! MacReady confirms both our suspicions AND horror-movie conventions by telling Gary, “We’ll do you last.” But it isn’t Gary who’s evil…

3. Alien – Dallas’s Death

Ridley Scott gives us a master class in suspense and payoff. It’s for this reason I consider Alien to be more horror than sci-fi or action.

4. The Descent – Night Vision

Thanks to the unique setting, the cinematography for The Descent had to be innovative. The black cave, orange flame, and green night vision work together to prepare us for the big scare.

5. Poltergeist – The Clown

I’m not afraid of clowns. But demon-posessed clowns…?

6. Jurassic Park – The Raptor

This is still one of my favorite films. I was in third grade when Jurassic Park hit theaters, and it was my first PG-13 movie. Are there scarier scenes in the movie? Yes. Do they make you jump out of your skin like this surprise raptor attack? Nope.

7. Signs – Birthday Party

I never said every movie on this list was good. Ultimately, Shamalan’s Signs is a failed mixture of faith and horror… but I’ll never forget the first time I saw this scene!

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